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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Terrific Trucks follows the adventures of five real trucks and excavating machines with animated eyes and engaging personalities. Each episode sees them tasked with a job around their community that requires all or some of their expertise. As they work to complete it, they must resolve problems that arise, which leads to lessons about personal and team dynamics. Viewers learn how the machines operate, what jobs they can do, and how they work together to complete a job, as well as basic jargon related to excavation. By focusing on real trucks in real settings, the show makes it easy for young viewers to draw parallels between the characters and what they see in the real world. Another bonus? It makes it a lot more enjoyable for grown-ups to watch with their kids.
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What's the story?
TERRIFIC TRUCKS tags along with five real dirt-moving vehicles as they join forces to tackle different jobs around their community. Reporting in at home base, Tork (voiced by Martin Roach), Stotz (Scott McCord), Sparky (Paloma Nunez), Dug (Anand Rajaram), and Blinker (Stacey DePass) await instructions on the day's assignment from dispatcher Bill Board (McCord again). On the job, they must work together to complete the work safely and efficiently and to adapt when the unexpected happens.
Is it any good?
This exceptional series caters to kids who love big vehicles, and its unique live-action style (animated eyes are superimposed on real trucks) is a real treat. By keeping the animation to a minimum and putting the characters in real-life scenarios, the show allows kids to draw greater parallels between the characters and similar earth movers they might see in person. At the same time, the trucks' distinct personalities complement their physical appearances, from Blinker, the diminutive mini front-end loader, to the solid, reliable dump truck, Tork.
Terrific Trucks also captivates kids by incorporating some excellent life lessons in the characters' relationships. As in real life, there's always an element of surprise when you're rubbing elbows (or buckets) with others, and the trucks learn a lot about group dynamics and teamwork through their real-world experiences. Need another reason to love this show? It celebrates the kind of work these vehicles -- and by extension, their operators -- do in the real world.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the different jobs the trucks on Terrific Trucks can do. Which are best for digging? For moving? For smaller jobs? What are your kids' special abilities? Do they ever use them in a team setting?
In what ways are these characters community heroes? Who in your community do your kids look up to? How is their work invaluable to the people who live there?
Kids: Is it hard to admit when you're wrong or you've made a mistake? Why is it important to acknowledge it? How do you amend for a mistake? Are you quick to forgive others when they've wronged you?
- Premiere date: July 8, 2016
- Cast: Scott McCord, Martin Roach, Stacey DePass
- Network: Universal Kids
- Genre: Kids' Animation
- Topics: Cars and Trucks, Adventures, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models
- Character Strengths: Curiosity, Teamwork
- TV rating: NR
- Available on: Streaming
- Award: Common Sense Seal
- Last updated: September 20, 2019
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